The U.S. government’s Internet priorities in Europe are upside down. It has chosen bits over bodies, prioritizing protecting the neutrality of innumerable inanimate Internet bits over protecting peoples’ privacy and personal data.
Google has privacy clay feet. The NSA and Big Data may also, since they are relying on many of the same outdated legal assumptions as Google. In the last few months, both the U.S. Supreme Court and European authorities have made new baseline privacy decisions that have greatly strengthened individuals’ right to privacy. As a result, they’ve also exposed and heightened Google’s massive privacy liabilities.
At the Examiner, Gene Healy writes about why the Rand Paul/Rick Perry initial sparring is good for the foreign policy debate on the right. Whether it’s good or bad in the long run, I do believe it illustrates a number of challenges Republican candidates in 2016 will have to deal with, and the difficulty of assessing where the Republican base is headed at a time when few leaders have run in tandem with its shifting views on national security and foreign policy.
ho does Google think they are fooling?
Google just bought Skybox Imaging for $500m to gain access to its capability to take real-time, high-resolution satellite images/videos of the whole world daily. Last week Google sources told the WSJ that Google was planning to spend $1-3 billion on “180 small, high capacity satellites at lower altitudes than traditional satellites” to enable two-way Internet access. In April, Google bought Titan Aerospace – which makes solar-powered, high-flying drones that Titan calls “atmospheric satellites” — for Internet access to remote areas and for disaster relief. And in March Google CEO Larry Page shared his ambitions that Project Loon “could build a world-wide mesh of these balloons that can cover the whole planet.”
Rather than enforcing European competition law against systemic abuses of dominance by the single most dominant company in Europe, this political deal surrenders inexplicable concessions, including defining Google’s 90 percent share as not dominant, claiming its multiple abuses of dominance are legal and implying Google did nothing wrong.
The continuing scandal regarding National Security Agency monitoring of U.S. citizens’ and residents’ electronic communications makes one thing perfectly clear: If anyone is going to protect the public from unwanted snooping, the government isn’t it.
The last remaining glimmer of Obama’s political capital and personal appeal, and thus his ability to help vulnerable Democrats in the 2014 elections and beyond, is flowing into the septic tank of Progressive history.
Google’s faux outrage at the Washington Post’s Snowden story that the NSA directly tapped into Google’s internal network of data centers to surveil whatever it wanted, is akin to the classic line in Casablanca, where Captain Renault feigned public outrage in telling his casino partner: “I am shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on here!”
The same hucksters and frauds that tell you that 0.039% by volume of the carbon dioxide in the Earth’s atmosphere poses a huge threat to all life and those claiming that the presence of arsenic in tobacco smoke is a health threat are dependent on public ignorance.